Bob Haffeman was member of Mobridge state champs

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Mass of Christian Burial for Robert “Bob” Gerald Haffeman, 85, of Aberdeen, will be 10:30 a.m., Thursday, May 10, 2012, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, 502 2nd Ave. SE, Aberdeen, with Father Shane Stevens officiating.

Burial will be at Sacred Heart Cemetery, Aberdeen. Schriver’s Memorial Mortuary and Crematory, 414 5th Ave. NW, Aberdeen is in charge of arrangements.

Liturgical wake service will be at 7 p.m., Wednesday, May 9, 2012, at the mortuary. Visitation will be from 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday at the mortuary and one hour prior to the Mass on Thursday at the church. Friends may sign his online guest book at www.schriversmemorial.com.

Robert passed away Saturday, May 5, 2012, at Avera McKennan Hospital in Sioux Falls. Blessed be his memory.
Robert “Bob” Gerald Haffeman was born on Sept. 12, 1926, at Marmarth, N.D., to George and Anna (Meliziva) Haffeman. The family lived in Mobridge until 1930, when they moved to Hawkins, Wis., where Bob attended grade school. In 1940 the family moved back to Mobridge where Bob attended high school and was part of the basketball teams that won the State B Championships in 1943 and 1944. He graduated from Mobridge High School with the Class of 1944.

After graduation, Bob enlisted in the United States Army Air Corps, serving as a radio and control tower operator at Langley Field, Va., with the 734th AAF Base Unit from 1945 until 1947. Following his honorable discharge, Bob returned briefly to Mobridge, before attending South Dakota State University in Brookings from 1947 to 1951, where he received a degree in industrial arts.

Bob was united in marriage to Shirley Jeanne Biegler at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Aberdeen on Sept. 18, 1950. The couple lived in Mobridge, where Bob worked for the Milwaukee Railroad as a breakman conductor. In 1954, the couple moved their family to Aberdeen and Bob joined the family business, Biegler Motors Inc., where he was employed until the time of his retirement in 1994.

In February of 2012, he became a resident of Avera Prince of Peace Retirement Community in Sioux Falls and continued to reside there until the time of his death.

Bob was a confirmed member of St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Mobridge and a member of Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Aberdeen, where he was active as a catechism teacher and a Perpetual Adoration Member of St. Luke’s Chapel. He was also a life member of the Knights of Columbus. Bob and Shirley were part of a couple’s bridge club for 50 years, as well as members of the Belles and Beaux Square Dance Club.

Bob was an avid fisherman, hunter and gardener. He and his friend, Wes Rovang, spent each spring and summer planting and harvesting a wide array of flowers, fruits, and vegetables, especially asparagus and raspberries.

Bob also enjoyed inventing different things. His friend, Iggy Hartung, and he devised an early snowmobile with an airplane engine and a cab with four kitchen chairs to cruise the open fields around Melody Lane with their families. Later their project of a homemade pontoon boat, housed at Mina Lake, became the site of many afternoons of family fun. Bob will always be remembered for his enthusiasm and his smile was contagious.

Surviving Bob are his wife, Shirley Haffeman of South Dakota; his children, Lenn (Beverly) Haffeman of Colorado, Lee Anne (Charlie) Santiago of Maryland.; Patrice (Kazuo) Udagawa-Haffeman of Fiji, Priscilla (Ivanio) Ribeiro of Brazil, Ritch (Kim) Haffeman of South Dakota, Paul Haffeman of Montana, Michelle (Patrick) Thies of South Dakota, John (Sheila) Haffeman of South Dakota and Chris (Michelle) Haffeman of Minnesota; 24 grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren; siblings, Don Haffeman of Colorado, Gordon (Patsy) Haffeman of Wyoming, George (Bernie) Haffeman of Wisconsin, and Melvin (Janet) Haffeman of Wisconsin; sister-in-law, Beverly Haffeman of Minnesota; and many nieces and nephews.

Bob was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers, Richard and Lenard Haffeman; and one sister, Violet Althaies.

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